Do you have the guts to do it?

By
Real Estate Agent with Edina Realty

Go paperless!

I was going to take a picture of my piles of files to make a point, but chose not to embarrass myself.  I'm contemplating going paperless, having everything scanned, and chucking the paper.  Why is it so hard to let go of these files?

Comments (22)

Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

You could do what I do.  Scan everything and still keep the files piled on your desk!

Nov 19, 2008 01:23 PM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Greg - I'd make sure to back everything up and keep it on disc.  I know what you are saying - there is just something about being able to touch the paper.  I don't know if it's just because our era has become so accustomed to having the files to refer to or what?

Nov 19, 2008 01:26 PM
Suzanne McLaughlin
Sabinske & Associates, Inc. (Albertville, St. Michael) - Saint Michael, MN
Sabinske & Associates, Realtor

We strive to be paperless. but the banks still need real faxes sent back and forth so that constitutes thick files.  We still back everything up on sticks so we can transport between our two offices, but that's kind of a drag, too.  Then, I have all the passwords to keep track of for all the websites and we have all this new tech coming down the road.  Paperless....no.  Paperful....yes.  Just try to keep up, Darla.  LOL. 

Nov 19, 2008 01:28 PM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Ryan - Excellent point.  Can we legally do that ... I'm going to ask our corporate attorney before I shred anything.

Nov 19, 2008 01:29 PM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Patricia - Paperless isn't looking good for me.

Nov 19, 2008 01:32 PM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Suzanne - You're hilarious.  We have to meet :)

Nov 19, 2008 01:33 PM
Keisha Hosea- KASIHomes.com
KASI Homes - Chino Hills, CA
Real Estate Solutions For Real People

Darla,

Go ahead and as Nike says..."JUST DO IT." I have just started my paperless transition and I am loving it. I just completed my first paperless file two weeks ago. It was liberating to be able to ask clients to review paperwork online. At the close, I was able to create a disk of the entire transaction for every party involved including myself. Wow, everything on one small disk instead of those enormous bu;ky files. An added benefit is that I felt like it really kept me on top of my paperwork better.

Nov 19, 2008 01:42 PM
Michelle Tucker ~ Pooler Real Estate
!Daley Real Estate - Pooler, GA
Rincon~Savannah~Richmond Hill

Darla:  Well, I am in the same boat. Paper after paper. My girlfriend was telling me about this transaction manager where everything is via Internet?  Has anyone heard or used it?  Best of luck with the piles of paper.

Nov 19, 2008 01:45 PM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Keisha - You are my inspiration to going paperless!  People are doing it - I don't know why I'm having such a hard time with it.  Crazy.

Nov 19, 2008 01:45 PM
Linda Pitts
Merck Team Realty, Inc - Brandon, MS

Paperless.....NEVER!  I had a computer crash in July last year.  Backed up files?......of course not!  Then my home was struck by lightning on December 27.......all files backed up?  of course not!  Most of us don't thing to back files daily...much less have the time to do so.   Ugly stacks of files can be a good thing!

Nov 19, 2008 01:46 PM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Michelle - It kind of reminds me of tax returns.  My gosh, how long do we keep all of our records "just in case".  Holy crap.  :)

Nov 19, 2008 01:48 PM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Linda - Okay, so how long do you keep the files?

Nov 19, 2008 01:49 PM
Lane Bailey
Century 21 Results Realty - Suwanee, GA
Realtor & Car Guy

I hate paper... and I am working to eliminate it from MY life.  I have a tablet PC and generally avoid printing.  But I have an out.  My broker needs to keep a copy. 

Nov 19, 2008 01:57 PM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Lane - You and I are a lot alike; I hate paper too.  Absolutely can't stand it - in fact, it depresses me.  I work for a corporate company, and I can't imagine why I would need to hang on to these files forever when the corporate office must have the same docs I have.  In fact, they should be responsible for the files.  I'm sold.

Nov 19, 2008 02:09 PM
Not a real person
San Diego, CA

The answer to your question is fourfold:

  1. You like the smell of paper
  2. You like the look of paper
  3. You like the look of squiggly lines and pictures on paper
  4. You like paper cuts

Once I got over those four things, it wasn't hard for me to go paperless. Well, actually, it was the number of files that I was having to keep, and all the paper that was in those files. Then California made it easier for me by declaring that faxes, scanned documents, emails, and various types of "non-original" signatures could be legally binding in a court of law when done properly. So I had my attorneys help me set up things so that they were done properly.

My office is now 95% paperless. I do have to take some paper to the inspections with me, but even they eventually get scanned once I'm finished with the report.

Nov 27, 2008 03:24 AM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Russel - 95% paperless ... very encouraging.  I'm still working on how, and if, this can be done in the State of Minnesota.  Thank you for taking the time for the comments :)

Nov 28, 2008 02:12 PM
Tony Orefice
Wilkinson ERA/www.TonyORealtor.com - Concord, NC
Realtor/Harrisburg NC,Concord NC

Paperless?...don't think so. I like having that hard copy around...lol

Nov 28, 2008 02:39 PM
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Tony - I'm beginning to think it's more about getting organized than going paperless.  I've hired an assistant because I'm a mess in the office.

Nov 28, 2008 02:48 PM
Brenda Harmon
Century 21 Beal, Inc College Station, Texas - College Station, TX

Darla,

I am starting to scan and burn but I got nervous.  Is it paper anxiety?

Dec 01, 2008 04:42 PM
Anonymous
Anonymous

Brenda - I have the same issue :)

Dec 02, 2008 02:09 PM
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